Mark Lanegan Talks Upcoming Album ‘Imitations’ And Recording With Kurt Cobain

Mark Lanegan recently talked with’s Will Levith and discussed his upcoming covers album Imitations, the music of The Byrds’ Gene Clark, as well as recording Leadbelly covers with Kurt Cobain in the early 1990s. Here are some excerpts from Lanegan’s interview:

Your latest, ‘Imitations,’ is a covers album — but there are only a few tunes on here that audiences have probably heard of. Are you the type of guy that sends his friends obscure LPs and says, “You’re gonna love this?”

Yeah, I do that, but my friends do the same. They turn me onto the obscurities out there, too.

Is that how you came about some of the songs on the record?

Well, a lot of that stuff came from my childhood. They were records my folks were listening to when they were playing cards with their friends. Some of the songs I heard on Andy Williams records. He was very popular in our household, and to do this day, I still consider him to be one of the greatest singers of all time, although some people might consider him schmaltzy. I think he’s fantastic.

We read somewhere that you recorded a blues covers album with the late, great Kurt Cobain. Have you listened to the masters since his death?

We were going to make an EP of covers of Ledbelly songs, and we went in and recorded a few, and then lost interest pretty quickly. I put ‘Where Did You Sleep Last Night’ on my first solo album [‘The Winding Sheet’], and then Cobain later re-did that same song in the ‘Nirvana Unplugged’ session. The other songs I don’t think I put any vocals on. I think that stuff has come out on a Nirvana boxed set. I haven’t listened to it since the day we did it.

 You can read the rest of the interview at Mark Lanegan is set to release his new covers album, Imitations, on September 17. In the meantime, you can listen to Lanegan’s cover of The Twilight Singers’ “Deepest Shade”:

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  • Mia

    This was a really good interview with Mark. The funniest question though was when he asked where Mark was at and Mark replied that he was picking up dog shit out of his yard. Totally unexpected and hilarious.

  • Raj

    Him and Cobain on Down in the Dark is pretty cool.